Eating, cooking and learning about homegrown products

The Yukon Culinary Festival will show that the territory has a lot to offer when it comes to food. The line-up of events includes everything food lovers could dream off, from cooking over an open fire, to a family lunch at Horse Haven Ranch.

The Festival will kick off on Aug. 1 at the newly renovated MacBride Museum. There will be food from Yukon-based chefs, including Dona Novekosky of Klondike Rib and Salmon and Katie Thom of Lulu’s Lunch Truck. Guests will enjoy live music from The Shaggy Manes and there will be a photo booth with fun Yukon costumes. If you’re keen on learning how to cook like a chef, come to the cooking demos at Fireweed Market, also happening on Thursday. Local chef and author Miche Genest will demonstrate how to cook with Yukon products. On Aug. 2, visitors can travel back in time on board the S.S. Klondike. Chef Carson Schiffkorn will create canapes that will transport guests back to the 1950s when the S.S. Klondike was a cruise ship.

The Yukon Culinary Festival hosted a farm lunch event at the Circle D Ranch as part of the 2018 event

The festival, established by the Tourism Industry Association of the Yukon, has been operating since 2013. Eric Pateman, founder and president of Edible Canada, has been involved with the festival for many years. He’s excited to help showcase Yukon cuisine.
“For years we have worked to produce events in the Yukon that generate a strong sense of Northern food culture and put the spotlight on local ingredients. We are excited and look forward to celebrating local,” he said.

One of the highlights will be the family lunch on Aug. 3 at Horse Haven Ranch. Guests will learn about local meat while enjoying lunch. Menu selection includes a tasting of Horse Haven Beef (three breeds), side of beef smoked and roasted in hay, fire-roasted whole farmed wild-type boar, Icy Waters Arctic char tempura and plant-based dishes. One of the organizers, Meighan Makarchuck, said there will also be open fire cooking. Horse Haven’s website says the company supplies grass-fed-meat. For the feeding, the farm gets its hay from B.C. and Alberta.

There will also be music, activities for the kids (sack races, tomato slingshot, egg on a spoon race), farm tours, a cash bar, kid-friendly non-alcoholic beverage choices and much more. Kids 10 and under are free.  Another highlight will be the Feasting and Foraging event at the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre on Aug. 3, said Makarchuck. There will be open fire cooking and cooking from guest chef Chris Whittaker of Quaaout Lodge in B.C. The lodge is located on First Nation Secwepemc Territory. Whittaker is well-known as a humble champion of local cuisine. There also will be a huge buffet of locally farmed, fished and foraged foods.

The festival takes place from Aug. 1 to 4. More information can be found about the events at YukonCulinary.ca